Wednesday, June 21, 2023

{I've Been Reading} The Wicked Unseen

The Quiet Tenant by Clemence Michallon

This book is seriously creepy. Rachel has been held prisoner in a backyard shed for five years. She knows little about her captor, but now and then she sees signs indicating that there's been another victim. He's killed those other women, but not Rachel. Not yet. Then things change. His wife has died and her parents are selling the isolated property out from under him. He'll be moving into a new house with his teenage daughter, and Rachel is to take on a new role as a family friend who has fallen upon hard times and is renting their spare room. She'll join them in the kitchen for meals -- when she isn't handcuffed to the radiator in a locked room upstairs. Her only chance to stay alive is by following his new rules. 

Over the past few years, I've read several books about women kidnapped and locked away for years. This one is different. The fact that we see Aidan through his thirteen-year-old daughter's eyes and the eyes of a local bartender who has a bit of a crush on him makes him even more chilling.  


The Wicked Unseen by Gigi Griffis 

Audre and her family don't fit into their new community at all. She loves horror movies and has a pierced nose. Her parents collect ouija boards and her father is a former member of the Church of Satan. They don't blend into the highly religious rural community that was worried about secret devil worshippers even before a teenage girl vanished. 

I wanted to like this one a lot more than I did. The Satanic Panic still fascinates me.  The writing style pulled me right in, but if it hadn't been for the lack of cell phones and two mentions of movies that had just come out, I wouldn't have been able to tell that the book was set in 1996. Audre's attitudes make it feel like she's living in 2022.  She's angry and mean, lashing out at everyone whose views differ from her own.  Yes, some members of the local church as terrible and deserve it, but she seems to hate everyone, even friends who have done nothing to hurt her. The book makes some great points, but it's very anti-Church and anti-police. 

Disclosure -- The publishers provided me with advance review copies. This post contains affiliate links. 


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